So, the Happy Families bubble burst today, and I am pleased to report that my employees are actually just as fucked up as everyone else.
Most of them are going on vacation next Monday, and they suddenly all decided they had to get "their side of the story" in with the new boss. But the new boss doesn't care. Half of them are cheating on their spouses with coworkers. I don't care. The other half are overly concerned about said cheating. This also doesn't register as important. I have seen where this goes, and it's a horrible snarl of twisted priorities, but I don't give a shit.
It's really this simple. We fix the domes. We get the brain-eating amoebas out of the water. We clean up after semifunctional scientists and ancient docents. We don't run tourists over. It's not calculus.
I am not bitching, mind you. I am actually quite relieved, as things seemed just a little too good to be true, and now it's way more human.
Hank shuffled into the room. This was an office, once. Long ago, before the Roger times came. Hank remembered an office here some time last month. Now it was a labyrinth of manuals and schematics. Hank couldn't believe there was anywhere enough equipment to justify this much paper. Not in the complex. Not in the state.
He had been hesitant to come in, really. Davis had come in with a welcome and a gift basket earlier in the day and nobody had seen him since. He'd probably gone home. Must have gone home. But it didn't sit right. No, Hank hadn't wanted to come in but he felt it was morally imperative that the new boss know the score.
The room seemed empty. Gradually accepting that Roger wasn't in, Hank let his attention drift to the annotated schematics covering the floors and walls and found that he had trouble parsing them. He narrowed his eyes and moved nearer a document with renewed focus. To his surprise, the content was indecipherable. It was positively arcane and certainly nothing related to any of the equipment he'd ever seen. Paralysed by puzzlement as he was, Hank didn't see Roger emerge from a stack of books until he was upon him, pinning the puzzled engineer to the wall and disturbing the new wallpaper, sending robot pin-ups drifting to the floor.
"What is it, man? Is it the domes?"
Hank blinked and stammered, "I... I... no? What? No. The domes are..." He committed to pushing Roger from him indignantly and straightening his clothes but found this commitment didn't translate into anywhere near enough force to make the man budge. Roger's face advanced upon him and Hank became aware that the new boss was wearing a jeweller's monocle, giving an eerie, inquisitive edge to his stare.
"The domes are..? You were saying about the domes?"
Hank stared in terror. "No, I... well, that is. I thought you should know about what's going on between Laura and James and Karen." He had meant to be more tactful, but circumstances had not allowed for that. Roger released him and turned away dismissively, appearing to immediately lose interest. He took a couple of steps away before pausing and looking back "And you're certain there's nothing about the domes?" The new boss's glare was chilling. "You certainly wouldn't keep anything from me if it were about the domes?"
Hank shook his head desperately. Roger glared a moment longer then nodded his acceptance. "Very well. Back to work. There's no place like dome." His lips twitched a brief smile at the last sentence. Roger gestured to his desk, upon which a gift basket sat. "Help yourself to a little treat on your way out, for your excellent work."
Hank's blood ran cold. Not at the sight of the gift basket, but at the only other non-paper item atop the desk.
Holding down the corner of a diagram of the facility, functioning as a paperweight, were Davis's car keys.